George Bush’s testosterone-laced
nomination acceptance speech was a public relations masterpiece—of
omission. He ”forgot” to tell us his record of
the past four years, and for good reason:
* Neither weapons of mass destruction nor
9/11 links to Iraq have ever been found or proven, despite
his reckless assertions
when he plunged into a “preemptive” war, for which
90 percent of the casualties are our brave soldiers and almost
all the cost, billions of dollars, are paid by American taxpayers.
* On his watch, one million jobs have been
lost — the worst
record since Herbert Hoover.
* Four million Americans have lost their
health insurance since Bush took office. Thirty-plus million
remain in poverty.
* His Medicare “reform” package
is nothing but a giveaway to pharmaceutical companies and offers
little or no
benefit to the elderly.
* He declared “mission accomplished” in
May 2003. More than a year later, almost 1,000 brave American
are dead, almost 20,000 Iraqis are dead, and thousands of Americans
and Iraqis wounded. Did you hear “mission accomplished” in
his speech? No. Nor did you hear “Osama bin Laden.”
* Bush turned a $6.5 trillion national surplus
of Reserve Board Governor Laurence Meyer before the U.S. House
of Representatives Committee on Banking and Financial Services,” May
3, 2000) into a $7.4 trillion national DEBT (U.S. Treasury Dept.)
that will be paid for by generations at the expense of desperately
needed social services, education, health, defense, Medicare,
and Social Security. Did you hear “deficit” in Bush’s
* He signed the biggest tax giveaway in
history to the wealthiest Americans (incomes over $200,000),
while jobs are leaving America
by the thousands and the middle class finds itself facing stagnating
wages, job losses, and often desperate financial straits.
* He has rendered America dangerously unsafe,
with practically the entire Muslim world hating us.
* He has articulated neither an Iraq exit strategy nor a plan
for peace. Iraq is now a haven for terrorists and America is
a poster boy for terrorism.
* He is the first president since 1948 not
to attempt a diplomatic solution to the Israeli-Palestinian
crisis, adding to the Middle
East’s hatred of us.
* He has failed by millions of dollars to
fund his own “No
Child Behind” education legislation. A better slogan would
be “Most Children Left Behind”.
* He continues to remain on the radical
right fringe, standing against stem cell research which could
be the medical breakthrough
of our lifetime. He opposes pro-choice; he appoints extremist
judges who disregard the Constitution; and he wastes precious
time on anti-gay measures disowned by his own vice president.
* Bush had nothing to say about the cronies he has appointed
to his cabinet or about the profits they are reaping from the
war in Iraq. Nor about the fines levied against his VP’s
former company, Iraq contractor Halliburton: $7.5 million by
the SEC for bribes and cost inflations [SEC 2004-104, 8/3/04].
BUT THERE IS HOPE! Unlike Bush, who has no plan for anything
except more of the same, U.S. Senators John Kerry and John Edwards
actually have a detailed (283-page), realistic plan called, “Our
Plan for America.” (See it at www.johnkerry.com).
The Democrats’ plan offers hope:
To reduce the enormous deficit; to honorably end the war in
To concentrate on beefing up the military to meet future threats
from terrorists and nations with real nuclear capabilities like
Iran and North Korea.
To cut taxes for 98 percent of Americans and 99 percent of
To replace war with diplomacy as America’s primary tool
of foreign relations.
To rebuild alliances before mounting unilateral invasions.
To free us from our dependence on foreign oil.
To preserve pro-choice for all women and to expand stem cell
research and real health care reform.
To provide scholarships for those kids who really need them.
To bring jobs back from foreign lands and create them at home.
To preserve our precious environment.
Kerry and Edwards offer America strength at home and respect
abroad. They offer us, in the words of Hawai‘i’s
own Barak Obama, “the audacity of hope.”
Al Lynde, JD, an attorney for the Hawai‘i Civil Rights
Commission, teaches political science and law for the HPU Military
Campus Programs. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org